Santo Christo Parish, Logo
  Fall River, Massachusetts
(508) 676-1184

The Sacraments

The very life and mission of the Church depend on the sacraments of the New Covenant, starting with Baptism.
Sacraments are visible signs of God's invisible grace, of the activity of the Lord Jesus in saving and sanctifying men and women.
Sacraments not only signify divine grace but also give it, increase it, or restore it in the soul of the recipient;
their power comes from His presence.

The seven sacraments are: Baptism, Confirmation, the Eucharist (Holy Communion),
Penance (a.k.a. Confession and Reconciliation), Holy Matrimony, Holy Orders, and the Anointing of the Sick.


Infants should be brought to church to be baptized as soon after birth as is safe and reasonably convenient. Baptism is the sacrament of rebirth as a child of God, of unity with Jesus in His Death and Resurrection, of cleansing from original and personal sins, and of welcome into the community of the Church. Call the parish office for information about baptismal preparation and scheduling.

Adults who are not baptized and wish to become Catholic (or at least inquire about the Catholic Faith) are invited to enroll in RCIA (see Ministries).

Baptism Water

Requirements for Sponsors (Godparents)

As specified in the Code of Canon Law (1983), can. 874

The role of a sponsor (godparent) is to help the baptized to lead a Christian life in harmony with baptism, and to fulfill faithfully the obligations connected with it. To be admitted to the role of a sponsor, a person must:

    • be designated by the child’s parents, or by guardians, or in their absence by the minister of Baptism;
    • have completed 16 years of age, unless for a just cause it seems to the Pastor that an exception can be made;
    • be a Catholic who has been confirmed and has already received first Holy Communion and leads a life in harmony with the Faith and the role to be undertaken (thus, for example, anyone living with a boyfriend or girlfriend as if married, or in a marriage not recognized by the Church, is not eligible to be a sponsor);
    • not be bound by any canonical penalty;
    • not be the father or the mother of the one to be baptized.

If the intended sponsor is not a Santo Christo parishioner, he or she must obtain a “sponsor certificate” from his or her own parish priest. Qualified sponsors who cannot be present at the baptism may appoint another person to serve as proxy; the proxy should meet the same requirements of any sponsor.

First Holy Communion

Children normally receive their First Holy Communion during the 2nd grade (about age 7) in the spring, after a two-year program of preparation which includes sacramental confession.

Stained Glass - Confirmation


Confirmation is the sacrament by which those born again in Baptism now receive the seal of the Holy Spirit, the gift of the Father and the Son. Preparation for the Sacrament of Confirmation is a two-year program for 8th and 9th graders. At the end of 9th grade, candidates receive Confirmation after attending Mass with First Communion "prayer partners" every other week, six hours of community service, and a retreat (see below).

Unconfirmed adults should enroll in RCIA (see Ministries).

Confirmation Retreat

 Take time away from your normal activities in order to experience the Holy Spirit working in your life and in the lives of others.
During this retreat Confirmation candidates will learn spiritual lessons about family, Mass, and the formal faith formation process.
We also invite adults to help prepare our candidates to meet the spiritual challenges they will face in our modern world.
The retreat provides opportunities for:

Teen and Adult Talks  •  Peer Discussion Groups  •  Quiet Time and Personal Reflection  •  Recreation

Marriage Preparation

If you are engaged or considering marriage, contact us at least eight (8) months before the intended wedding date. We cannot schedule your wedding prior to your initial meeting with the parish priest.

Couples preparing for marriage must attend a Marriage Preparation or "Pre-Cana" conference.
You may register for this online after your initial meeting with the parish priest; to register, click HERE.

In consultation with the priest (or deacon) who will be officiating at your wedding, you may choose Scripture readings from the selection of readings approved for the Rite of Marriage (click HERE).

Rehearsals are normally held the evening before the wedding. Bring to the rehearsal (unless you have already provided these at an earlier time): your Massachusetts marriage license; the church fee ($125, payable to "Santo Christo Parish"); and the musician's fee ($125, payable to "Cash").


Anointing of the Sick

The Anointing of the Sick is the sacrament for the seriously ill, infirm and aged.
By the anointing with oil and prayers for health, the Church through her priests asks the Lord to heal the sick,
lighten their sufferings, forgive their sins, and bring them to eternal salvation.
This sacrament is best received as soon as the danger of death begins, from sickness or old age.
To request the sacrament for yourself or another Catholic, call the parish office.